From the always-awesome Toothpaste for Dinner
Farming, even small scale local farming, is not the bucolic utopia that critics of the modern food system like to imagine
Farmer Blake Hurst, in an interesting roundtable about whether the government should subsidize localized food production in the Times.
Donner Party Not Such Hardcore Foragers After All
Once the undisputed champions of the “eat local” movement, the Donner Party has now been demoted to mere cattle and dog eaters by a recent study that found no evidence of cannibalism. But cheer up—it is still 100% hilarious to give that name at restaurants.
Also I just want to say that I found this image on a site called The Enchanted Porkfist.
Around the Blogs with Julia Childless
The question now is, what to do about this great withering away of the means of food production? The response from conventional economists is: Let the market fix itself. If people want local, pasture-raised meat and dairy, they’ll flock to the farmers market to buy it, and farmers will take their extra profits and invest in their own facilities. But people are flocking to farmers markets; the problem is, profit margins on small-scale farming remain so tight that few farms have cash to spare on such investments.
We’re moving towards a classic market failure: We see increasing demand for locally and sustainable grown farm products, increasing desire among farmers to meet that demand— and an infrastructural gulf separating them.
Time for the public to reinvest in food-system infrastructure | Grist
This sort of crystallized for me what bothers me about the idea that you can locavore your way out of food issues. The demand IS growing—even shutupfoodies folks like me prefer to hit the farmer’s market instead of the grocery store. But what happens when the local farmer can’t produce enough to feed the folks who want to eat the good stuff?
The local-meat movement has a problem in the pipeline, with a serious shortage of meat-processing destinations. Some farmers are having to make appointments to have their animals killed before they are even born. (Kind of like getting your kid into a New York school.) They should call Angelina Lippert!